Their Turn - The Social Justice Movement of Our Time Their Turn - The Social Justice Movement of Our Time

Five Activists Arrested for Allegedly Blocking Roundup of Wild Horses

February 25, 2014 by Leave a Comment


The News

According to the Calgary Herald, five activists documenting the roundup of wild horses in western Canada were arrested and charged with mischief for allegedly interfering with the operation. The activists, two of whom are elderly, are accused of preventing the horses from entering the capture pen. But they deny the accusation: “Nobody was tampering with the site. But they told us that us being in that vicinity would prevent horses from going into his trap.” Canada has issued licenses to capture 200 of the approximately 1,000 wild horses for personal use or slaughter. The government says it wants to “reduce the population to reduce their impact on the food supply for other animals.”

Wild horse roundup in Canada

Wild horse roundup in Canada

News & Opinion

When wild animals inhabit land that we want for ourselves, we often label them as pests, round them up and exterminate them. Even animals who are endangered are at risk. In Southeast Asia, for example, orangutans are being killed as their rain forests are “slashed and burned” to clear the land for palm oil plantations. To find out how you can help protect wildlife, please visit Defenders of Wildlife.


NYC To Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages

February 21, 2014 by Leave a Comment


The News

HLN’s Jane Velez-Mitchell provides the advocacy community with a rare opportunity to explain why horse-drawn carriages cannot be operated humanely or safely in urban areas.

News & Opinion

Animals exist for their own purposes. Using them to entertain us is inherently inhumane and invariably abusive, as documented in films like The Cove, Blackfish, An Apology to Elephants and Blinders, which is my documentary about the plight of NYC’s carriage horses. Please visit the Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages to see how you can help bring an end to urban horse-drawn carriages.


Baby Pigs Fed to their Mothers

February 20, 2014 by Leave a Comment


The News

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) released footage taken by an undercover investigator that shows baby pigs being fed to their mothers at a Kentucky pig factory. According to HSUS, “sows confined in cramped cages known as gestation crates were fed ground up intestines from piglets who had recently succumbed to a highly contagious diarrheal disease at the Iron Maiden Hog Farm in Owensboro, Kentucky. More than 900 piglets died from the diarrheal disease in a two-day period.” While prohibited by state law, the practice of feeding piglets to their mothers is fairly widespread, according to HSUS.

News & Opinion

Undercover investigators who work in factory farms say they are haunted by the sounds of mother pigs wailing in gestation crates, but it is because of their heroic work that change occurs. As a follow up to their hog farm investigation, HSUS is asking people to join their worldwide effort to ban gestation crates. Nine states have already done so.


NY Times Denounces Factory Farming

February 19, 2014 by 1 comment


The News

In a NY Times op-ed column about HSUS’ undercover video exposing cannibalism at a Kentucky pig operation, Nicholas Kristof says that “modern factory farms have so much wrong with them,” using gestation crates as an example: “Nine out of 10 sows in America are kept in gestation crates, according to the National Pork Producers Council. These are tiny stalls that are barely bigger than the pigs, who don’t even have enough room to turn around. They live out their adult lives without exercise or meaningful social interaction; it’s like a life sentence of solitary confinement in a coffin, punctuated by artificial insemination and birth. No wonder the animals’ muscles atrophy and they show signs of aggression and stress.”

gestation crate

Gestation crates

News & Opinion

Given the sheer number of animals “raised” in factory farms and slaughtered for food, the best way we can help the largest number of animals is to convince consumers to eliminate or phase out their consumption of animal protein – for their health, for the environment and for the animals. “Starter Guides” from the organization Vegan Outreach are one of many tools available to us.


Denmark Says “Animal Rights Come Before Religion”

February 18, 2014 by 1 comment


The News

Denmark has banned kosher and halal slaughter. According to British newspaper The Independent, “European regulations require animals to be stunned before they are slaughtered, but grants exemptions on religious grounds. For meat to be considered kosher under Jewish law or halal under Islamic law, the animal must be conscious when killed.” Muslim and Jewish leaders are claiming discrimination, but the Danish government is defending the law, stating “animal rights come before religion.”

slaughter

Photo from The Independent

News & Opinion

In spite of worldwide outrage, the Danish government didn’t intervene in February when the Copenhagen Zoo killed a healthy young giraffe to prevent inbreeding and fed him to the lions. In addition, the Danish government continues to allow the brutal slaughter of hundreds of pilot whales each year in the Faroe Islands. Like every other country that claims to care for its animals while condoning and defending violence toward them, Denmark is being hypocritical. And the government should be held accountable until all forms of animal abuse are abolished. But that shouldn’t stop us from celebrating and promoting their historic declaration that “animal rights come before religion.”